Financial times have been difficult (at best) over the past decade. From steady unemployment to a shaky investing outlook, people have been more worried about finances in the recent past than they have ever been before. Times have even been tough for providers of alternative financial services. With the DOJ using Operation Chokepoint to crack down on small dollar lending companies and check cashing facilities, the providers of alternative financial services have had to fight tooth and nail in order to assist the nearly 70 million people who are either underbanked or completely unbanked.

LA_at_dawnFor anyone who has been keeping tabs on things, the battle that non-bank financial service providers have had to go through, going all the way back to when the Comptroller of Currency set out on a mission to outright ban short term, small dollar loans from dispersing funds via big bank branches. While the office of the Comptroller obviously had their own agenda and job to do, with regards to taking a stance on the shady practices of SOME payday lenders, they certainly made life difficult for the legitimate short term lending companies too. Unlike what we’ve seen in recent years, with the rise of Operation Choke Point, it is easy to see that the past actions of the Comptroller’s office were not necessarily an attack on payday lenders, but rather was a step to prevent states from regulating national banks. Whether alternative financial service providers like what the Comptroller did or not, their policy was put in place to protect the interests of the entire national banking industry.

However, things could have been handled different with regards to thinking about the people who regularly take out payday loans or use other alternative financial services. Banks should actually do what they can to encourage small dollar lending, check cashing and other financial services that are regularly used by millions of people all across this land. The banks could do a lot of good, not just by encouraging these types of loans via third party lenders, but by directly offering these types of services to low and middle income customers who regularly make use of the services of both online and local alternative financial service companies.

There is a huge market out there for these types of financial services. Let’s take a look at this industry to better gauge just how huge this market is. According to information from the FDIC’s National Survey of Unbanked and Underbanked:

Families that bring in less than $30K every year account for over 70 percent of the underbanked households in this country.

With these stats in mind, it should be apparent to the powers that be that there is a desperate need that mainstream financial service providers simply cannot meet at the present time, and millions of families out there who depend on the money that they can only get through payday lenders and other alternative financial service companies. Until the national banking industry can step up to the plate and offer these types of services to the millions of people who need them the most, it is in the government’s best interest to stop persecuting small lending companies, but instead to start encouraging them to be able to provide the unbanked and underbanked people of this country with the financial services they so desperately need to get by from week to week.

The usage of an advance cash loan also known as a payday loan has saved many people from dire consequences such as the ability to pay for rent and mortgages. A cash loan helps the individual out until they are able to pay back the loan as a set date by the payday lender of their choosing. Everyone is able to obtain a cash loan bad credit as long as they provide the payday lender service with all of the correct information. The lender will ask the potential borrower about their contact information, employment information and checking bank account. The lender may also ask for several references such as the person’s relatives and close friends. The lender will only use the references if the borrower skips out on paying back the payday loan.

An advance cash loan is a very short-term cash loan that will last from two weeks to four weeks. The financial lender requires the borrower to pay back the loan on the set due date. The borrower will fill out an application but it is nothing compared to a bank application that will ask the application for their social security number and other private information. The information the lender will ask on the application includes the borrowers contact information, employment or income information, bank checking account information and reference information. The reference information is the borrower’s friends and family who will hear from the lender if the borrower decides to not pay for the long at the due date. If the borrower decides to rollover the loan into a new term there the borrower must be aware of the additional fees involved and the additional compounded APR (Annual Percentage Rate) rate if they decide to go that route.

Bad Check fees

ATM Fees: Paying for Convenience

Writing bad checks is an easy way to get into lots of trouble. Writing a bad check will cause the bank to do two things: one is they will return the item to the individual or business due to lack of funding within the person’s checking account. Secondly the bank may pay for items out of a courtesy but they will charge a returned item fee and any additional fees. The person will end up paying for many fees and may lose the ability to write checks in the future. The individual also runs a high risk of getting into legal problems and cause their credit rating to tank. The fee of writing a bad check has increased over the years. Some banks charge upwards of $30.00-$40.00 per insufficient fund item. Unfortunately all of these fees can easily add up, causing the individual difficulties to pay the bank for all of the checks they wrote that were returned right back to the bank. The bank may also charge the person overdraft fees which can often cost $35.00 or more and they are charged with interest on top of it.

ChexSystems Details

A person who consistently writes bad checks will end up on a system database called ChexSystems. Banks use ChexSystems as a way to determine if the person is eligible for a banking account. The bank will not allow people to open a checking account because of their problem. The bad report will remain on the person’s list for five years. After five years the bad report on the database will fall off or end. Writing bad checks has the potential to hurt the person’s credit rating and overall credit score as the charged off account will appear on their credit reporting account. ChexSystems has some similarities to credit-reporting companies and it’s also managed by the Fair Credit Reporting Act.